Mixing Arri Amira media with Samsung NX1 H.265

For the last couple years I’ve been using my Samsung NX1 as a second camera angle for my Arri Amira. You would think this is crazy to be mixing the two very divergent qualities back to back on the same timeline let alone the same show, given how far apart the two cameras are in price and overall camera quality. But the surprising thing is how well they actually match up under controlled lighting situations. Both the sharpness and color science from the two sensors are close enough for an acceptable match. I attribute this to the amazing quality of the Samsung NX1 sensor. It is a APS-C 23.5mm x 15.7mm 28.20 Megapixels sensor that is sharp and light sensitive. Arri Amira’s 35mm format sensor measures 28.17mm x 18.13mm and renown for sharpness, light sensitivity and dynamic range. Although the Samsung NX1 is no match in DR to the Amira, under controlled lighting situations the two can match up quite well. Amira was set for 3.2K ProRes 4:2:2 HQ, 10bit; while Samsung was set for UHD resolution, 4:2:0, 8bit, H2.65 codec, all at 23.976 fps.

 

These two scenes of the two shot are from the Amira using C-log and Rec.709 applied.

 

These two sets of close-ups are from two Samsung NX1 simultaneously shot with the Amira, no correction.

 

The Samsung close-up camera was set a tad brighter in exposure for the African American talent is about the only noticeable difference. Certainly, the Amira will provide a greater degree of color correction than Samsung given the better color space and bit rate, but starting from scratch in these samples doesn’t appear much of a stretch to match them all up.

I have used the Samsung NX1, both in HD and UHD mode, as a second camera for AT&T corporate and ESPN, Fox Sports feature stories and producers appreciate the second angle at a DSLR price point.

Alan Lefebvre, Director/DP

 

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